During the Driving Equality trek, I receive two to three pieces of hate mail a week. You can pledge any amount you chose, whether it be $0.25, $0.50, $1, or even $2 for every piece of hate mail I receive from now until the end of the journey on August 24th.
Or you can pledge a flat rate for the entire amount of hate mail I receive during the journey.
Now, when I receive I piece of hate mail, I will simply respond with a friendly message telling the sender how much he/she has just raised to advance LGBT equality by sending their hateful message.
Thanks for your support!
The next time I get a piece of hate mail, like the poem below that I received yesterday, I’ll make sure they know how much they are helping to advance LGBT equality!
Hate mail poem sent to me on June 25, 2009
“proud and gay they march along
growing in numbers, weak but strong
following the footsteps of another race
creating their own, demanding their place
prophecy foretold of these times
of men depraved, with reprobate minds
still on they go against the wind
blindly led, sick within
they wear their suffering on their sleeve
and call it gay, but who believes
they want so much to be a part
closet fugitives, with jealous hearts
they impose perversion, that we contend
making it law, protecting sin
but when we preach against their state
they loudly resist, and call it hate
of God’s first institution, they mockingly err
they wrongly define, they wrongly pair
unholy unions with conscience aloof
they live by feelings, devoid of truth
the legacy of sin is always shame
and by their choice, will not be saved
for they used a vice to vent their sorrow
lived only for today, and not for tomorrow”
You go, Chris.
Getting back your email might send some of those guys over the edge, though. They’ll feel a strong need to respond in kind, like with a real “bash-a-thon”. They are already on the edge, after all. It really might be better to let them get it out of their system with their hate-male, and not send them the “friendly message”. Still collect the donations, of course, but don’t tweak or provoke or humiliate such tinderboxes. Just in case.
Ha, yeah, they’re mainly men, so homophobia means hate-male, all right.
The theory of “getting it out of the system”, which decades ago led to such exciting therapeutic approaches as beating on pillows and primal scream, turns out to encourage angry people to remain angry, the reverse of the therapeutic intent.
p>Emotions, alas, are not subject to the same laws as fluid mechanics.
I’m not trying to encourage haters to send hate mail to get it out of their system, I’m worried that sending them back a “nyah-nyah-nyah, I’m smarter than you, you just helped us!” email is dangerous, it’ll lead to retaliation on a different level. I’m not sure how it helps to make a hater feel even more impotent and angry than he already feels.
If they’re sending mail to Chris, they’re probably sending mail to others. Groups like MassResistance send out alerts to their membership. They in turn send out hate mail.
p>There are probably lone wolfs as well, but it’s still highly likely that the mail to Chris isn’t an isolated incident. Or that his response is going to push them (any further) over the edge.
p>To take a personal anecdote, the person in my condo complex who complained about “n*****s” moving in 10 years ago is the person who threatened to bash my “fag Jew” face in 5 years ago is the person who today is screaming insults at the “gooks” We tried sitting down and talking. We tried formal warning letters. We now have a zero tolerance policy. With fines.
to release stress hormones.
p>It has something to do with the “fight or flight” hormones.
p>In todays world, we never physically flee, or fight, so the hormones remain in the system longer than they should and cause damage to the body. A great thing to do is run on a treadmill after a stressful day, because the act of actually running will make your body think you are fleeing and allow the hormones to leave your body. (don’t have a link to that but read it somewhere).
p>I think reaction to acute or chronic stressful situations and dealing with a psychotic mind are two different things.
p>Verbal, emotional, or physical abuse is not an acceptable way to get anything out of your system.
If you want I could provide references, but this result is well-known precisely because it is counter-intuitive. There have been a slew of studies. One trip to Google brings me this.
p>The expression of dysfunctional anger has two components: cognitive distortion and lowering of inhibition. Catharsis does nothing for the first and makes the second worse not better.
and deserves a post all it own.
p>Maybe I’m combining stress with anger and shouldn’t be. Stress can happen without anger, but I would say you can’t have anger without some degree of stress.
p>Adding “dysfuntional” to the mix changes everything.
p>With respect to the letters written to chrissmason, it’s probably accurate to say that writing those letters did not relieve them of their hate, and they would be quite able to repeat or escalate the behavior at any given opportunity.
Possibly, writing the letters in the first place is in a sense giving themselves permission to pursue future abusive behavior.
p>So anyway chrissmason, since you don’t know who you are dealing with, please just ignore and move on.
ignoring them would seem like giving them permission to continue, and escalate at the lack of response. Maybe engaging with them holds them satisfactorily in place, and maybe showing them that they can’t win causes them to give up. It’s a crapshoot. Chris will have to judge each case, flip a coin, hedge his bets. It certainly wouldn’t Chris’s fault if his response or non-response to someone’s hate mail provokes them further, but let’s agree it would be bad to inflame people, purposefully or inadvertently, to blog about the hatred and rally people, because that puts people in harms way. Not that Chris is calculatedly doing that, but that’s why I’m pointing out that he should consider ignoring hate mail, and also ignore me, and you, and move on. God’s will will be anyway, why am I even typing this when I could b
but also a little scary, there are the psychos out there, obviously these letter writers have psychotic tendencies to be sending you hate male in the first place, especially with threats of physical violence. Maybe, ignore is a wiser choice.
God-speed on your journey, may you find support and safety every minute of every day.
that’s a good moniker for you.